Stone Cali-Belgique IPA | Stone Brewing

BA SCORE
89
very good
3,438 Ratings
THE BROS
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Stone Cali-Belgique IPAStone Cali-Belgique IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States
stonebrewing.com

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A California-style IPA with a Belgian twist
AKA Stone Cali-Belgiƫ IPA
First Release:
September 2008

Stone Cali-Belgique IPA features a complex and surprising combination of flavors, but behind the fancy title is the simply delicious Stone IPA. The addition of a carefully selected strain of Belgian yeast adds banana and spice notes to the hoppy brightness of our flagship IPA. Think of it as an otherwise identical twin to Stone IPA that was raised in a Belgian culture. Literally.

Added by gpogo on 07-23-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,438
Reviews:
1,110
Avg:
3.99
pDev:
11.28%
 
 
Wants:
122
Gots:
708
For Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 3,438 |  Reviews: 1,110
Photo of zeff80
4.19/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, golden-orange color with a small, white, bubbly head of crackling foam. It some soapy trails of lace on the glass.

S - I picked up the fruity and yeasty aroma while I was pouring it. When I put my nose to the glass, I picked up some citrus and caramel, as well.

T - It tasted very yeasty and spicy with great pine notes. The fruity flavors were present but not nearly as strong as the aroma.

M - A crisp and very sharp beer with a dry finish. A light to medium-bodied IPA.

D - This is a very good Belgian IPA. It is very tasty and easy drinking.

 573 characters

Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of dmorgan310
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best by 7/18/2012. Pours lightly hazy golden amber color with a good 1-2 finger dense off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of lemon zest, clove, pepper, banana, orange, grapefruit, herbal, grass, honey, earth, and yeast spices. Very nice and well balanced aromas with good complexity. Taste of big lemon, orange rind, pepper, clove, banana, grapefruit, honey, bread, herbal, floral, pine, earth, and yeast spices. Good amount of spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, banana, clove, pepper, herbal, pine, earth, and yeast spices on the finish for a good bit. Great flavor balance and complexity. Medium carbonation and body; with a very nice crisp and lightly creamy mouthfeel. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed at all after the finish. Overall this is an excellent Belgian IPA. Great balance of hop and yeast character; and extremely smooth to drink. Very well done.

 1,039 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy apricot a pretty nice white head. The initial whiff is of floral hops, followed by some Belgian yeast characteristics. The taste is quite similar, with the addition of a little bit of sweetness. The mouthfeel is fairly heavy, but very nice. A bit of dryness in the aftertaste. Quite drinkable in small quantities, but not something I'd quaff 22's of too regularly.

 377 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep, golden colored body with good clarity and one and a half fingers of white head. The head settles quickly to a loose layer of big bubbles and leaves a nice, thick ring of lace.

S - A nice, big spicy/ citrus hop aroma up front, backed by clove and tropical fruit aromas from the yeast. Some subtle sweet malt lurks in the background along with anise, clove and a hint of allspice.

T - Moderate, spicy hop flavor and big, mouth coating bitterness in the front. Subtle yeast flavor appears in the middle, light pineapple and clove, but fades quickly. Some bready malt in the finish along with renewed bitterness than dominates and lingers on the palate.

M - Moderate-light body, medium carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - Interesting and drinkable. The aroma is excellent, but the flavor doesn't live up to it. There is a lack of Belgian character in the flavor even though the nose exhibits lots of yeasty goodness. In the end it comes off as mostly IPA and just a little bit Belgian.

 994 characters

Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Mellow here in Greensboro.Poured into a standard pint glass a peach infused medium golden with a thinner white head atop,medicinal and citric aromas mainly.Flavors have a slight medicinal quality and deep fruity esters,a citric pine hop component comes into a lingering finish.Not a bad beer but Iam not a fan of the medicinal yeasty quality it has to it.

 369 characters

Photo of Boone757
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of jlindros
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Armsby Abbey

A: Pale golden brown color and very hazy and 1 finger head with good retention

N: Nose has some light hops as well as sweet malts and yeasty tones and a touch of nuts, some citrus and spice from the hops

T: Taste starts with some interesting sour sugary notes, lots of raw sugar taste, an interesting fruity center and slight creamy taste, some interesting Belgian yeasty taste mixes with a slight hoppy taste, somewhat like a Belgian IPA and reminds me somewhat of Hopsinjoor, it also has some bright citrus as well as a chalky dusty cinnamon taste in the middle

M: Mouth is juicy with a lot of carbonation and kinda thin

F: Finish has some strong bitter hops and spicey hops with grassy earthy taste that maintains its sweetness as it leaves a huge bitterness on the tongue

Final thoughts: An interesting beer that combines two great beers, as many have done before it, that don't usually blend well. Even with stone doing it, it doesn't blend perfectly but they do a pretty decent job of it. It doesn't have many qualities of either Belgian tripel or Cali style IPA, but slight parts of each rounded pretty well. Its not something to drink every day but occasionally it's an interesting change.

 1,226 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.25/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. er.

Appearance - Clear amber-copper.Lots of visible carbonation rising to a small but durable white head.

Smell - Yeast, wet leather, sour apple and tropical fruits

Taste - A cross between an IPA and yeasty Belgian pale ale. Lightly funky. Moderately bitter with a bitter aftertaste suggesting grapefruit and yeast. Overly bitter.

Mouthfeel - Medium body; medium+ carbonation.

Overall: Cali-Belgie indeed, with pronounced hops and strong Belgian yeast influences.

 511 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.6/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a bright orange/amber color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of floral hops, citrus, Belgian yeast and caramelized malts.

T: The taste is very well-balanced with a strong hops bitterness up front that is quickly tempered by a citrus & caramel sweetness and a bready backbone of Belgian yeast. There's also a touch of spice and a hearty malt character. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, good kick, excellent representation of style, this is yet another excellent beer from Stone, it is definitely worth drinking for a whole evening.

 814 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of Kegatron
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle split into several glasses at a recent tasting. Thanks go to Deuane for this one.

Pours a clear gold, topped with a finger of brite-white colored foam. Quite the robust little layer, that leaves some thick patchy lace back. The aroma is floral and spicy, with some heavier accents of deep bready grains and bright smelling citrus behind it giving off a moderate tang. An undercurrent of yeast adds a bit of extra sharpness to the nose. The flavors are there, but this just lacks a certain sizzle in the nose.

The bitterness is spicy and piney, with that same deep toasted grainy character from the aroma. Delicious tropical fruits and bread mix with yeast in the finish, before ending with a lighly spicy and dry feel. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a mellow creaminess to it that then bubbles up near the back. Despite an obvious heft in the body, the alcohol is very nicely hidden here.

A solid Belgian IPA from Stone. The aroma had me concerned at first, but the taste and great feeling body more than made up for it. I'd love to try this on tap to see if that aroma would pull up any.

 1,113 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a crystal clear deep golden yellow approaching orange in color with some extremely light visible carbonation. The beer has a two finger tall creamy looking light beige head that reduces to a thick film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a couple of thick patches and a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Lots of aromas of citrus and floral hops along with some light spices.

T: There is a wonderful flavor of citrus, floral, and spicy hop notes. There is a pleasant underlying malt body that gives a light sweetness upfront. Light bitterness but not over the top of aggressive.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Dryness in the finish.

O: This beer is pretty well balanced with nice amounts of complexity. There is a very enjoyable flavor/smell and the beer is very easy to drink, I could easily have more than one of these but it might be a little strong to be sessionable. I found this pretty refreshing and will likely have it again.

 1,046 characters

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of mactrail
2.77/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Astringent is the word that comes to mind.

Attractive golden color, promising aroma. There is a hint of sweetness on the lips but immediately hits you with the full force of bitter hops. The wisp of Belgian complexity is quickly overwhelmed. Hint of spoiled fruit. Oof, gets less tolerable with each sip.

What's wierd is that I tasted this a couple of times in 2009 and liked it -- I wonder if this bottle is a little bacterial. Came from a store cooler in San Diego.

 469 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber - $6.49 at Bullock's in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a light orange-hued body with a large, frothy, white head. Splotchy, sporadic lacing on the way down.

Smell: Delightfully aromatic nose smelling sweetly of bright, fresh tropical fruits and citrus oils with a minor backing of lightly bready malts and spice.

Taste: Sweet, lightly bready maltiness gently yields to a tropical mixture of juicy oranges and grapefruit with a late addition of pine. As the punchy bitterness dies down tastes of artificially-sweetened chewing gum and faint, peppery spice begin to appear. Finishes expectantly dry with lingering aftertastes of bitter, pithy citrus fruit peels.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Lightly oily mouthfeel.

Drinkability: As tasty and supremely drinkable as the original, though I dare say it's just a skosh bit better than the standard Stone IPA.

 895 characters

Photo of billab914
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Portsmouth snifter glass. Pours a hazy orange color with a one finger white head. Laced nicely on the glass.

Aroma is hoppy and citrusy with strong Belgian yeast spiciness. Taste starts out with the citrus and hoppy flavors but then the big spiciness of the belgian yeast hits your pallet. The yeast gives it a very strong spice kick that dominates the flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good.

Overall this was pretty good, it was more on the Belgian side of the spectrum than the American IPA. If you like Belgians and hops you would probably like this one.

 640 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sunny tangerine with a few fine floating flecks that don't look like yeast particles. It'll be interesting to see what the final pour adds to the glass (note: nothing much). Atop the beer can be seen three fingers of foam the color of pearls bathed in a soft orange light. The sturdy crown looks more American than Belgian, but then this is an American ale. Cheese grater-like lace sticks to all available surfaces.

The nose is as expected given the ingredients. Magnum, Centennial and Chinook hops add the Cali, while the yeast adds the Belgique. A pretty successful marriage if you ask me. Each sniff delivers orange, grapefruit, lemon and bubblegum. Clove and other spicy yeast esters aren't prominent. A hint of orange-flavored children's chewable aspirin keeps the score from the next highest number.

I like what Stone Brewing hath wrought in this attempt to merge New World hops with Old World yeast. That's a much more inviting combination than Old World hops (just one BA's opinion) and New World yeast (simple ale yeast). This brew may not be quite as delicious as Stone IPA, but it's close. Unfortunately, my flavor memory of their standard IPA is sadly fading since I have no easy access.

The balance between hop flavor and yeast flavor is close to perfect. The impressive tropical fruitiness of the former gradually morphs into the bready and bubblegum-like qualities of the latter. As in the nose, spiciness is kept to a minimum (without being completely AWOL). A blast of clove and cardamom wouldn't have worked as well.

Despite 77 IBUs, the beer doesn't seem overly bitter. Having said that, at roughly the midway point of the bomber, my tongue in beginning to quiver just a bit. Incidently, the alcohol is hidden very well. As the beer warms, kiwi and strawberry notes begin to filter in at the edges. This really is a sneakily complex ale.

The mouthfeel is merely good. It wouldn't be fair to expect something Belgianesque, since the only thing Belgian about this offering is the yeast. Still, it could be more full... or more smoothly creamy... or more softly fluffy. I'm not picky.

If Cali-Belgique IPA is an experiment, then it's a successful experiment. By virtue of one simple change, Greg and the boys at Stone have managed to create an IPA that tastes nothing like the original, yet is just as good. If the suggestion box is open, here's a vote for continued production. Distribution to Iowa is probably a pipe dream, but then that's why I look forward to traveling back to Ohio several times each year.

 2,534 characters

Photo of russpowell
4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This one is courtesy of errantnight, review based on notes

Opens with a nice whoosh! Pours an effervescent & bright apricot with 2 fingers of ivory colored head. Great lacing & head retention

S: Appleskins & pears

T: Follows the nose, plus a bit of candi sugar, phenols, dirt & lemons up front. Breadyness, apricot & a kiss of booze as this warms. Finishes with orchard fruittyness, dryness & grapefruit (about time the Cali side shines through)

MF: Semi-chewy with light but noticable carbonation & very good balance. Chewier & slightly slick once warm

Drinks very easy, a nice take on the style

 602 characters

Photo of drewone
3/5  rDev -24.8%

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Stone Cali-Belgique IPA from Stone Brewing
3.99 out of 5 based on 3,438 ratings.
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